Posted by: Barbara Evanhoe | December 10, 2010


In just a few weeks my firstborn will deliver her first child, and I am looking forward to that day with wonder!

It doesn’t seem possible that 9 months have almost passed, and that soon my baby will be a mother, and this mother will pass the torch to the next generation and assume a new title – grandmother.

I remember vividly, the trip home from the hospital with my daughter, in January 1978…deep snow covered the world, and I sat there in the car with my newborn safely tucked into her car seat, musing on how the entire world had changed for me, in just the three days I had been in the hospital…and yet, the rest of the world was going on as if nothing had happened.

The experience was surreal and I felt separate and alone.

Many things have changed in the birthing world these past 32 years, and I am grateful that my daughter is far better prepared than I was, and that she has created a comfortable environment in which to welcome her child into the world, where she will be surrounded by her wonderful husband and a “clan” of wise and knowledgeable women.

In her honor, I offer a couple of poems on birth: the first, by Silvia Plath, short, beautiful and serious; the second, author unknown, irreverent and graphic. Enjoy!

Love set you going like a fat gold watch.
The midwife slapped your footsoles, and your bald cry
Took its place among the elements.

Silvia Plath

I wish I was a fetus
I never would be bored
Sitting in my uterus
Swinging on my cord.

To worry granny midwives
I’d be a proper beast
I’d change position on the hour
Transverse, oblique then breech.

To student midwives I’d present
A mystifying case
I’d hide myself inside the os
And leave an empty space.

I’d tie my cord into a knot
And wave it through the cervix
I’d give the midwives such a shock
And laugh off all my vernix.

And when my membranes rupture
I’d be a right old pest
Presenting large diameters
I’d transversely arrest.

I’d tell my pal placenta
To get himself detached
To theatre then the lot of us
Would pronto be dispatched.

And when they start to caesar
I’d laugh and think “Tee hee!’
When no one else is looking
I’ll come vaginally.

Author Unknown



  1. Awwww…. Thanks, Mom (or, should I say, Soon-to-Be-Grandma?!)! Very, very lovely. Lots of love to you!

    • Grandma says “You’re welcome!”, and thanks for giving me cause to muse.

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